Man who drove drunk, triggered crash that killed couple admits guilt, gets 14-year sentence
SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A motorist who drank 17 beers before triggering a
Mountain View-area freeway pileup that killed a Las Vegas couple and seriously
injured two other people pleaded guilty Tuesday to gross vehicular manslaughter
and was immediately sentenced to 14 years in state prison.
Pedro Antonio Sainz, 29, also admitted allegations of hit-and-run and
multiple victims in connection with the June 10, 2012, pileup that took the
lives of 66-year-old Ramiro Aguilar and his 47-year-old wife Bertha.
At an earlier hearing, Deputy District Attorney Kristen Spieler said the
defendant drank 17 beers at a bar before getting behind the wheel and losing
control of his car, which collided with the Aguilars' 2005 Toyota Matrix on
northbound Interstate 805 around 2:30 a.m.
The Matrix — with the Aguilars and their 13-year-old son inside —
overturned and rolled several times before coming to rest in the middle of the
freeway, just south of Imperial Avenue.
Sainz pulled over to the right shoulder, got out and ran off, while
other motorists stopped to help the Aguilars.
Moments after the couple's son was extricated from the crumpled Matrix
hatchback, a 1997 Toyota Tacoma truck plowed into it, ejecting Ramiro Aguilar
and his wife onto the roadway.
A motorcyclist then crashed his 2007 Yamaha YZF while trying to avoid
the overturned Matrix.
Bertha Aguilar died at the scene and her husband died at a hospital
about eight hours later. Their teenage son was not injured.
The driver of the Tacoma, 27-year-old Fernando Guzman, was treated at a
hospital for moderate injuries.
The motorcyclist, Robert Landa, received two broken bones in his neck
and other injuries, including broken ribs.
In court today, Landa criticized Sainz for running from the accident scene.
“You were a coward that day,” Landa said.
Outside court, Landa said justice was not done because nothing can bring
back the couple who died.
“It's not going to bring the kid's parents back, it's not going to heal
my bones, it's not going to change anything,” Landa told reporters. “It
doesn't really make a difference, to be honest with you.”
Sainz, when arrested two days after the crash at his San Diego home,
admitted drinking and that he shouldn't have been driving.